Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Make your Own Fidgets

So, it would seem the recent article about Teaching Wiggle Worms was fairly popular.  As a result, I thought you might like some tips on making your own fidgets for your home or classroom.  So here are a few ideas.

These should only be used around kids old enough to know not to chew or suck on such items.  Also be aware of wear and tear as a few might create a bit of a mess if they fall apart.  Lastly, if you multiple children (particularly if they are from multiple families) will have frequent access to these fidgets, make it a part of your weekly routine to thoroughly clean everything in the basket. 

Take two balloons and nest them so that you have a double layer of rubber.  Fill with flour, cornstarch, lavender buds or barley.   Things like popcorn kernels seem like another great idea, but their hard pointy end breaks through the rubber of the balloon.  Tie off both balloons at once.  You can also use surgical gloves (which somehow made them more appealing to kids in the preschool)  The material inside will move around and give an interesting sensation to the fidgeter's fingers while he or she "molds" the object.

Take craft pom poms and glue them together into a larger pile with hot glue.  Some kids might pull this one apart as their fidget, but if it helps them concentrate and learn, oh well.  You've just spent cents and a few minutes to make it so maybe it is a worth while trade-off.

Hand over buttons about the size of a dollar coin with a slightly concave side.  Kids can rub their thumb in the concavity while holding the rest of the button in the palm of their hand.  This works great with polished pebbles as well.

Purchase some remnant fabric in a variety of textures and patch together a few textures, or simply places palm-sized swatches in your fidget basket. 

Add a slinky and a couple of Bendaroos, throw in a clothespin (the kind with springs) and pair of wide (not at all sharp) tweezers or tongs (plastic to minimize noise) for good measure and you have a fairly well rounded box of items.  Reference my article, "Teaching Wiggle Worms" for more fidget ideas as well as ways to work with your "wiggle worm" and get a lot MORE learning done.  Also, for a statement about an outlook on learning that might help an ADD or ADHD student be more successful in academics read both, "Teaching Wiggle Worms" and "What Learning Looks Like to Me".


Anonymous said...

Thanks. These Ideas are working well for me.

Anonymous said...

Great thoughts....I agree! Thanks for your article:)

Anonymous said...

As a teacher and the Mom of an ADHD son, thanks for caring enough to share these ideas.

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